Happy employees boost employee retention rates and productivity levels. This simple statement is what drives employers to seek strategies that will foster satisfied employees.
According to an article by Issie Lapowsky on Inc.com, “the most successful businesses are the ones that work the hardest to please their employees, and it's up to managers to make sure they're giving their staffs what they want to the best of their abilities.”
In an October 2010, study conducted by the Corporate Executive Board demonstrated that a ‘connection to corporate strategy’ is what most effectively motivates ‘high-potential employees.’ This is one of many studies that show money is not the only or most effective means to creating a happy workplace environment and loyal staff.
Strategies that are conducive to giving employees what they want are rewards programs or incentives that allow employees to contribute work related ideas and input. In addition, companies, such as Virginia based software company Meddius, have found that a flexible workweek produces desired results.
Meddius implemented a results-only working environment (ROWE) that allows employees to work from anywhere, and anytime. The only stipulation is that the employee must complete their work on time and reach assigned goals. The results of this incentive have been increased productivity and loyalty toward the company.
"The goals have to be very measurable, obtainable goals," noted Jeff Gunther, CEO of Meddius. While employees love autonomy, they also need to be guided and connected to the company. And, of course, this type of program needs to be closely followed and adjusted as needed.
Another useful incentive strategy is employee recognition. All people want to be appreciated for their efforts and successes. The same holds true for employees. Encouraging employee participation is a method of showing recognition. "What people want most is the chance to make a difference," explained Alexander Hiam, author of Business Innovation For Dummies. "When you have a chance to have your ideas heard and one of them actually gets implemented, it's such a boost."
The above strategies and a number of other employee rewards and incentive strategies all work together to create a workplace that fosters the one thing all employees want: happiness.